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Southern Water announces new CEO - Lawrence Gosden

By Steve Charnock
8 June 2022

From the 1st of July 2022, former Thames Water man Lawrence Gosden will take over the reigns at Southern Water as CEO. The appointment follows departing CEO Ian McAulay's decision to retire.

Lawrence began his career at Southern Water, joining as a graduate. He has 30 years of experience in the industry, including a dozen with Thames Water and the last two back at Southern.

Lawrence was very pleased to be offered the position, saying this: “I am delighted to be taking on the role of CEO at such a pivotal moment. Southern Water has made great strides in improving transparency and putting in place the foundations of change.  We know we must continue to improve, and quickly. Working with the committed teams across Southern Water, we are ready to deliver the next phase of the transformation our customers and the environment deserves.”

Southern Water Chairman Keith Lough is also pleased with the recruitment, saying: "On behalf of the Board, I would like to congratulate Lawrence on his appointment, which follows an open and rigorous process. This smooth succession will allow us to continue our capital investment programmes and transformation at pace. His extensive knowledge and leadership within the industry will be invaluable as we drive the business forward. Importantly Lawrence will now lead us through the development of the PR24 business plan covering the next regulatory period.”

“The Board and I would like to thank Ian for the leadership and skill he has shown in carrying Southern Water through an enormously challenging period. He has led the transformation across the business and its culture, putting in place strong governance, operational and systems changes, which have enabled new investment in our business and from which we will now build."

The departing Ian McAulay said this of his time at Southern Water: “It’s been a privilege to have spent 37 years in the water and environment sector, and to have been able to lead Southern Water since 2017. I would like to thank both the Board and my colleagues for the support they have shown to me in that time."

"The time is now right to hand over the reins and I wish Lawrence success in his new role as CEO and have every confidence that he will drive ever increasing levels of performance going forwards.”

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